FIVE long-serving volunteer surf lifesavers, including Nowra-Culburra's Steve Jones, were elevated to the distinguished position of NSW life member, at the recent Surf Life Saving NSW annual general meeting.
Joining Jones in the inductees are Alan Parsons (Bellambi SLSC), Glenn Langley (Newport SLSC), Grahame Lott (Merewether SLSC) and Malcolm Flew (Cape Hawke SLSC).
The five inductees from across NSW have been recognised for their outstanding contribution to the surf lifesaving movement as lifesavers, competitors, coaches, and administrators.
"Being awarded with a life membership is a very significant achievement," SLSNSW president George Shales said.
"I would like to congratulate Steve, Alan, Glenn, Grahame and Malcolm for their achievements and acknowledge their continuing contribution to surf lifesaving,"
During his time involved in the sport, Jones has been a patrolling member since 1980 and has made an incredible contribution to surf lifesaving and to the Illawarra and South Coast branches over the past 41 years.
Jones is one of the few people who can lay claim to establishing a surf lifesaving club.
As a young police officer in Scarborough in the 1970s, he saw a need for increased beach safety and education in his community.
He set about rallying community members, the council and commercial partners to support his initiative to re-establish Scarborough SLSC.
His success was a truly remarkable achievement.
In 1982, he was transferred to Nowra through his work as a police officer.
He joined the Nowra-Culburra SLSC and was immediately elected to the position of club secretary.
He remains a member of Nowra-Culburra SLSC.
At a branch level, Jones held numerous positions including vice-president and then president of the South Coast Branch.
He successfully steered the Branch through some difficult and challenging periods.
He served on several branch committees including; finance, constitution and life membership.
He has been a Surf Lifesaving NSW state councillor since 2005 - a position he still retains.
He won the NSW Administrator of the Year Award at the 2005/06 NSW Awards of Excellence.
Over the past 10 years Steve has successfully lobbied local, state and federal governments for funding to build a new Surf Lifesaving South Coast Branch, training, administration and storage facility in Nowra.
He has secured a significant amount of funding for this development and is currently awaiting the announcement of an application to the federal government for an additional $1.2m in crucial funding.
Steve contributes in excess of 1,000 volunteer hours to surf lifesaving every year.
He is passionate about the role of volunteers in promoting coastal safety.
He is the South Coast Branch representative on the Shoalhaven rescue committee and the local emergency management committee.
Steve's dedication to the surf lifesaving movement was recognised at the 2017/18 South Coast Branch Awards where he was awarded life membership of the South Coast Branch.